Welcome to NAVIGATOR – a project designed to better understand the American public’s views on issues of the day and help advocates, elected officials, and other interested parties understand the language, imagery, and messaging needed to make and win key policy arguments.
GBAO conducted online focus groups on March 23, 2021 on behalf of Navigator with women in three areas: Raleigh-Durham, NC (healthcare industry, excluding doctors), Milwaukee, WI (service industry within the past year), and Phoenix, AZ (educators). Women could have multiple jobs across industries. Some quotes have been lightly edited for brevity. Qualitative results are not statistically projectable.
- In these focus groups, participants reveal the deep personal impact of COVID, one year on. Many speak openly about anxiety, depression, and loss. All respondents take COVID seriously in their personal and work lives.
- Nonetheless, many try to remain positive, practicing gratitude and trying new tools like mindfulness, puzzles, exercise, and therapy. Some also see the upside in a slower paced, less crowded life.
- Even when called “a hero,” work pressures have increased. And those in retail can face confrontations.
- All told, most expect “a new normal” rather than “back to normal.”
Despite Some Silver Linings, Many Feel Uneasy Or Anxious
For Many Women, COVID Brought Familiarity With A “Dark Place” And A Drive To Move Beyond It
Quite a few mention depression and anxiety, or a loss of jobs, family members, travel, connection, and hugs.